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Colorado Appeals Court: Three Months Of Surveillance Via Pole-Mounted Camera Is Unconstitutional

How much warrantless surveillance is too much surveillance? It depends on which court you ask. Public areas, which include people’s front doors and unfenced yards, have very little in the way of privacy expectations. Consequently, there’s a lot of warrantless surveillance aimed at these areas, usually in the form of pole-mounted cameras. While warrants could be obtained, they usually aren’t. And, in some cases, the surveillance occurs during the early stages of an investigation where enough probable cause hasn’t been established to secure a warrant even if investigators thought they might need one. In 2014, a Washington federal court judge…

Apple admits iPhone 11 Pro still collects location data even when told not to

A security researcher has found that the iPhone 11 Pro still intermittently collects location data even when the user has blocked it from doing so. Apple has seemingly admitted this, telling the researcher that this is ‘expected behavior’ … KrebsOnSecurity identified the issue, made a video showing it happening (below) and reported it to Apple. However, the response from the iPhone maker implies that certain ‘system services’ continue to collect location data even when the user has selected Never for all individual system services and apps. One of the more curious behaviors of Apple’s new iPhone 11 Pro is that…

Say cheese! DHS proposes MANDATORY facial recognition checks for US citizens at airports

The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is pushing to impose mandatory facial recognition scans on all Americans entering or leaving the United States, moving to close a loophole that allows citizens to opt out. Proposed in a recent filing, the DHS requested a change to the current rules in order to “provide that all travelers, including US citizens, may be required to be photographed upon entry and/or departure” from the US, citing the need to identify criminals or “suspected terrorists.” While not yet implemented, the rule change is in the “final stages of clearance,” a DHS official told CNN…

KONE To Put Facial Recognition And Alexa Listening Devices In Elevators

The good old days of elevator music being a minor distraction is about change. VentureBeat reports that “elevators of the future will have virtual windows, voice-activated controls, music-streaming, and more.” KONE’s DX Class, elevators will give security and the buildings owners, unparalleled access to view what is happening inside their elevators. “Yesterday’s announcement concerned new elevators designed from the get-go with connectivity built in, allowing building owners to remotely control, activate, and deactivate specific services from a central dashboard. The setup includes a dynamic display, acoustics, and lighting that can be used to tailor the ambiance and interior.” KONE’s “Monitoring…

Leaked documents show state-owned Chinese companies are shaping global UN facial recognition standards

Leaked documents obtained by the Financial Times show that state-owned Chinese tech companies are drafting proposals that shape global facial recognition standards. According to the documents, China Telecom, Dahua, and ZTE are proposing new international standards that influence the United Nation’s (UN’s) International Telecommunication Union (ITU) standards for facial recognition, video monitoring, city, and vehicle surveillance. These ITU standards are increasingly being authored by companies rather than government officials. Once drafted, these standards are highly influential on the global rules for using and developing facial recognition, particularly in developing countries. According to Richard Wingfield, the Head of Legal at the…

Propaganda: DHS wants to expand airport face recognition scans to include US citizens (surprise, it’s all ready happening)

Homeland Security wants to expand facial recognition checks for travelers arriving to and departing from the U.S. to also include citizens, which had previously been exempt from the mandatory checks. In a filing, the department has proposed that all travelers, and not just foreign nationals or visitors, will have to complete a facial recognition check before they are allowed to enter the U.S., but also to leave the country. Facial recognition for departing flights has increased in recent years as part of Homeland Security’s efforts to catch visitors and travelers who overstay their visas. The department, whose responsibility is to…

Gold Mine: Big Banks Coming After Your Spending Data…

There’s a powerful new player watching what you buy so it can tailor product offerings for you: the bank behind your credit or debit card. For years, Google and Facebook have been showing ads based on your online behavior. Retailers from Amazon to Walgreens also regularly suction up your transaction history to steer future spending and hold your loyalty. Now banks, too, want to turn data they already have on your spending habits into extra revenue by identifying likely customers for retailers. Banks are increasingly aware that they could be sitting on a gold mine of information that can be used to…

In Australia, cameras and A.I. are identifying drivers using their phones while at the wheel

Authorities in New South Wales, Australia, are to introduce a cell phone detection camera program by the end of this year. The announcement, made over the weekend, follows a six-month pilot which took place between January and June. During that trial, technology supplied by a firm called Acusensus was able to check 8.5 million vehicles and determined that over 100,000 drivers had been using their phones illegally. It’s envisioned that after starting this year, the program will expand to carry out 135 million vehicle checks each year by 2023. According to New South Wales’ Centre for Road Safety, the system…

Slaves in China are now required to have their faces scanned when registering new mobile phone services

People in China are now required to have their faces scanned when registering new mobile phone services, as the authorities seek to verify the identities of the country’s hundreds of millions of internet users. The regulation, announced in September, was due to come into effect on Sunday. The government says it wants to “protect the legitimate rights and interest of citizens in cyberspace”. China already uses facial recognition technology to survey its population. It is a world leader in such technologies, but their intensifying use across the country in recent years has sparked debate. What are the new rules? When…

Facebook built a facial-recognition app that let employees identify people by pointing a phone at them

Facebook, which has been under fire because of privacy concerns, said Thursday it built an internal app that allowed employees to identify their colleagues and friends who enabled facial recognition by pointing their phone cameras at them. The app, reported earlier by Business Insider, wasn’t released publicly. Citing anonymous sources, Business Insider reported the app was developed between 2015 and 2016 but has since been discontinued. One version of the app could identify anyone on the social network if there was enough data to do so, BI reported, citing an unnamed source. Facebook acknowledged it had developed a facial recognition app,…

EFF to DHS: Stop Mass Collection of Social Media Information

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) recently released a proposed rule expanding the agency’s collection of social media information on key visa forms and immigration applications. Earlier this month, EFF joined over 40 civil society organizations that signed on to comments drafted by the Brennan Center for Justice. These comments identify the free speech and privacy risks the proposed rule poses to U.S. persons both directly, if they are required to fill out these forms, and indirectly, if they are connected via social media to friends, family, or associates required to fill out these forms. DHS’s Proposed Rule In the…

Facial Recognition “Robocops” See Through Our Clothes And Listen To Our Phone Calls

It has been six months, since I informed the public about the dangers of police Knightscope robots that look an awful lot like Doctor Who’s infamous Dalek’s. In my article I warned people that police would use Knightscope’s thermal imaging cameras to identify what is under everyone’s clothes. (To learn more about public imaging scanners click here.) A recent article in One Zero revealed that Knightscope has turned their Robocop’s into mobile facial recognition devices that can also blacklist people. “One presentation slide features the company’s facial recognition capabilities, indicating that the company can surface a known person’s name, the…

Amazon’s Ring Planned Neighborhood “Watch Lists” Built on Facial Recognition

Ring, Amazon’s crimefighting surveillance camera division, has crafted plans to use facial recognition software and its ever-expanding network of home security cameras to create AI-enabled neighborhood “watch lists,” according to internal documents reviewed by The Intercept. The planning materials envision a seamless system whereby a Ring owner would be automatically alerted when an individual deemed “suspicious” was captured in their camera’s frame, something described as a “suspicious activity prompt.” It’s unclear who would have access to these neighborhood watch lists, if implemented, or how exactly they would be compiled, but the documents refer repeatedly to law enforcement, and Ring has…

The FCC is making it easier for police to find you through your cellphone

The Federal Communications Commission wants it to be easier to find people who call 911. In a statement, the agency said it adopted new rules that will make it easier for first responders to locate people in multistory buildings who call 911 on their cellphone. The rules could help officials determine callers’ floor level, reducing emergency response times. It adopts a vertical location accuracy metric of plus or minus 3 meters relative to the caller’s handset and is reliable for about 80 percent of indoor calls. “This accuracy metric … will identify the floor level for most 911 calls,” the FCC said,…

Smartphone Videos Can Now Be Analyzed and Used to Pinpoint the Location of a Shooter

Complex arrays of microphones are often used by law enforcement and the military to help quickly pinpoint where the sound of gunfire originates. But researchers at Carnegie Mellon University have found that videos captured by smartphones can be just as useful for determining the location of a shooter. The Video Event Reconstruction and Analysis system—or VERA, for short—was developed at CMU’s Language Technologies Institute with the cooperation of SITU Research who shared its expertise on ballistics and architecture, and the tool was released last month as free-to-use open-source code at the Association for Computing Machinery’s International Conference on Multimedia in…

DNA genealogical databases are a gold mine for police, but with few rules and little transparency

Orlando police Det. Michael Fields was sure he had the break he needed right in front of him to close in on a serial rapist: a list of people whose DNA partially matched the man he hunted. Then the list disappeared. After a year of criticism from privacy advocates and genealogy experts, the owner of a popular DNA-sharing website had decided law enforcement had no right to consumer data unless those consumers agreed. “It was devastating to know that there’s information out there,” Fields said. “It wasn’t fair.” So he persuaded a judge to grant him access to the entire…

The California DMV Is Making $50M a Year Selling Drivers’ Personal Information

The California Department of Motor Vehicles is generating revenue of $50,000,000 a year through selling drivers’ personal information, according to a DMV document obtained by Motherboard. DMVs across the country are selling data that drivers are required to provide to the organization in order to obtain a license. This information includes names, physical addresses, and car registration information. California’s sales come from a state which generally scrutinizes privacy to a higher degree than the rest of the country. In a public record acts request, Motherboard asked the California DMV for the total dollar amounts paid by commercial requesters of data…

US Army working on “Google Earth on steroids” 3D map that can simulate the inside of buildings

If you thought Google Earth was rather revealing, then you’re about to feel naked in your own home. The U.S. military wants to take 3-D maps a step further and penetrate walls. The U.S. military is currently developing a “Google Earth on steroids” that can see inside buildings and simulate functional indoor spaces. This virtual 3D mapping system would not only provide the government with accurate 3D maps of roads, neighborhoods, and the placement of dwellings, but it would also detail the inside of buildings – giving the government eyes inside your own home. U.S. military using drones and AI…

Police can keep Ring camera video forever and share with whomever they’d like, Amazon tells senator

Police officers who download videos captured by homeowners’ Ring doorbell cameras can keep them forever and share them with whomever they’d like without providing evidence of a crime, the Amazon-owned firm told a lawmaker this month. More than 600 police forces across the country have entered into partnerships with the camera giant, allowing them to quickly request and download video recorded by Ring’s motion-detecting, Internet-connected cameras inside and around Americans’ homes. The company says that the videos can be a critical tool in helping law enforcement investigate crimes such as trespassing, burglary and package theft, and that homeowners are free…

“Safer By The Slice” Crime Tip Program Rewards Students And Faculty With A Free Pizza

  In the never-ending War on Terror, Big Brother has proven time and again that it has no shame when it comes to creating suspicion or the illusion of terror where there is none. The University of Texas at Austin’s (UT), Jester Center for Housing and Dining has decided that the best way to celebrate their 50th. anniversary is to encourage students and faculty to report people to the police. “Our Vision is to create transformative living and learning environments where students feel safe, involved and inspired to change the world.” And what better way to create a “transformative living…

Mayor Wants Ban On Surveilling The Public Lifted, Claims It Limits Their Ability To Fight Crime

What should be headline news across the country is relegated to a single local newspaper fighting back against illegal government surveillance. Over the past two years, Memphis, Tennessee Mayor Jim Strickland and the Memphis Police Department have claimed that a 1978 consent decree barring them from conducting political surveillance limits their ability to fight crime. The Commercial Appeal warns that Strickland wants to destroy the 41 year old ban on public surveillance without a warrant. “Before the Memphis municipal election, Strickland’s administration filed documents under seal in federal court asking to modify the 1978 Kendrick consent decree — the court…

Parents Furious to Find Schools Using App to Track Kids in the Bathroom

There is no doubt we are living in increasingly Orwellian times. Most of us are not surprised when it is revealed that yet another government agency is spying on us in yet another way. Being surveilled nearly everywhere we go (and even in our own homes) has become the norm. And if it isn’t government agencies doing the spying, it is Big Tech companies. It seems like every day we are told about another privacy violation coming from Google, Facebook, and Amazon. Recently it was announced that Big Tech and government are forming an unholy dystopian alliance called HARPA that…

How Big Corporations Spy on Their Workers to Keep Their Wages Down

Google’s computers are spying on its workers. Anytime a Google employee uses an online calendar to schedule a meeting involving more than 100 co-workers, management gets an alert—a great way for the anti-union corporation to sniff out union organizing efforts. Lots of other employers also would like to put union organizing campaigns under surveillance. And they’ll have their chance if the National Labor Relations Board gives corporations a free hand to snoop on employees, as two of the board’s right-wing members, John Ring and Marvin Kaplan, evidently want to do. Ring and Kaplan want to reconsider the longtime ban on…

‘When Will Someone Go to Jail?’: New Report Shows Google Secretly Storing Health Data of Millions of Americans

A “bombshell” new report from The Wall Street Journal describes a secret project from Google and healthcare giant Ascension to store data on millions of Americans, a move that critics of the tech conglomerate decried as another example of overreach. “When will someone go to jail?” wondered mathematician and musician David C. Lowery. “That would stop this shit real fast.” when will someone go to Jail? That would stop this shit real fast. Google’s secret “Project Nightingale” gathers personal health data on millions of Americans https://t.co/4gurOtrUw4 — David C Lowery (@davidclowery) November 11, 2019 According to the Journal, Google and Ascension made the decision…

Homeland Security will soon have biometric data on nearly 260 million people

The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) expects to have face, fingerprint, and iris scans of at least 259 million people in its biometrics database by 2022, according to a recent presentation from the agency’s Office of Procurement Operations reviewed by Quartz. That’s about 40 million more than the agency’s 2017 projections, which estimated 220 million unique identities by 2022, according to previous figures cited by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), a San Francisco-based privacy rights nonprofit. A slide deck, shared with attendees at an Oct. 30 DHS industry day, includes a breakdown of what its systems currently contain, as…

Surveillance Capitalism And Social Media Surveillance In America

Social Media surveillance Freedom House warns that mass social media surveillance is growing. “Governments around the world are increasingly using social media to manipulate elections and monitor their citizens, tilting the technology toward digital authoritarianism.” “Many governments are finding that on social media, propaganda works better than censorship,” said Mike Abramowitz, president of Freedom House. “Authoritarians and populists around the globe are exploiting both human nature and computer algorithms to conquer the ballot box, running roughshod over rules designed to ensure free and fair elections.” “Governments from across the democratic spectrum are indiscriminately monitoring citizens’ online behavior to identify perceived threats—and in…

Facebook tests asking users to scan their face for verification

Long gone are the days when Facebook asked its users to upload copies of their driver’s licenses or passports just to ascertain that they were who they said they were. And Facebook users by and large complied – no doubt, believing there was some benefit to them in this exchange. By now, many of them probably know better. But by now, it’s also probably too late. It’s 2019, and the actual harm Facebook does to its users is the same it was in 2009 – the social media giant is harvesting users’ personal data, retaining it, and apparently using/selling it…

“Bathroom Big Brother”: Schools Are Using an App to Track Students’ Restroom Time

There is no doubt we are living in increasingly Orwellian times. Most of us are not surprised when it is revealed that yet another government agency is spying on us in yet another way. Being surveilled nearly everywhere we go (and even in our own homes) has become the norm. And if it isn’t government agencies doing the spying, it is Big Tech companies. It seems like every day we are told about another privacy violation coming from Google, Facebook, and Amazon. Recently it was announced that Big Tech and government are forming an unholy dystopian alliance called HARPA that…

Sidewalk Labs’ Smart Cities Will Create A For-Profit Social Credit System That Controls Judges And Police

Smart city surveillance, is much worse than anyone could have imagined. Two years ago, I revealed how a CIA “signature school” was installing thousands of CCTV cameras and microphones in smart cities, but Sidewalk Labs wants to take public surveillance to a whole new level. The Globe And Mail revealed that Sidewalk Labs “Yellow Book,” a guidebook designed to help Google employees build a smart city from the ground up, would give their employees control of public services. Yellow Book describes how Google plans to turn at least four major cities in North America into Sidewalk Labs smart cities. “The…

“Every Keystroke on Every Device Is LOGGED Somewhere”: The Unsettling Truth About the Internet

This isn’t supposition, or assumption, or even an opinion. It’s a fact. If you have the minimum of a standard smartphone and/or leave your house at any time, what you say, what you type, what you do, is being listened to, recorded, monitored, and analyzed by software, technology, people, or all of the above. Cameras in the phone, virtual assistants, GPS (Global Positioning System) tracking, traffic cameras, store cameras, other people’s phones, cameras and recording devices, dash cams, body cams, and even satellite and drone cameras, all watch, listen, and monitor what we do. And that’s just the tip of…

REPORT: 10,000 Cubans imprisoned for ‘pre-criminal’ actions

A human rights group working in Cuba is raising the alarm on the Communist nation’s rampant imprisonment of political opponents and civilians who speak out against the government. Prisoners Defenders issued a report Friday naming eight new political prisoners, who were allegedly arrested on phony charges and jailed in an undisclosed location with dozens of other “political convicts for opposition to the regime.” “We recognize in (Cuban Prisoners Defenders), as of November 1, 2019, 127 political convicts by the opposition to the regime but, in addition, another 10,000 civilians not belonging to opposition organizations, 8,000 of them convicted and 2,000…

‘Thank God for Deep State’, ex-CIA boss says. Still think it’s a conspiracy theory?

In just a few short months, the US political establishment has gone from denying the existence of the ‘Deep State’ and calling it a conspiracy theory, to praising it as the bulwark of the Republic against President Donald Trump. “Thank God for the ‘Deep State,’” declared former CIA director John E. McLaughlin at an event this week, describing the diplomats and intelligence officers testifying before the congressional impeachment inquiry as “people who are doing their duty or responding to a higher call.” Lavishing praise on the ‘whistleblower’ intelligence officer whose complaint about Trump’s phone call launched the impeachment probe, McLaughlin…

Company Allows Tax Collectors To Secretly Look For Home Improvements And Airbnb’s

Trust a corporation to turn property tax collectors into property owner surveillance operatives. Deckard Technologies (DT) promotes Smart City surveillance by creating a program that allows tax collectors to surveil resident’s properties anytime they want. If you hate corporate doublespeak like I do, then you will love DT’s explanation of how their product works. “Applying advanced data analytics, machine-learning and the talents of our data scientists, we identify, monitor and analyze real estate data and property activity for cities demanding answers with accuracy and precision.” Let’s start with their “advanced analytics that identifies, monitors and analyzes real estate data and property activity.”…

Aruba’s Facial Recognition Will Identify 2 Million Tourists At Car Rental Stations, Hotels And The Airport

Think twice, before planning your family vacation to Aruba next year. Because, Big Brother has big plans to monitor American tourists. A recent article in Breaking Travel News, revealed that the government of Aruba and the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTCC) are bringing facial recognition CCTV cameras to car rental stations and at least 15 hotels on the island by 2020. (To see a list of Aruba’s 274 hotels and Villa’s, click here.) “The pilot is designed to allow travelers to move through airports, car rental stations and hotels based on biometric technology alone.” According to the U.S. Department…

Australia wants citizens to unlock online porn with their face

Are you 18 or older? We have all encountered this phrase while surfing the web, and we know for sure that it doesn’t do anything in the way of preventing minors from accessing pornographic and gambling websites. For such reason, Australia’s House of Representatives Standing Committee on Social Policy and Legal Affairs is resolved to conduct an inquiry into age verification for online pornography and wagering. Facial recognition would be mandatory to access adult sites The committee is proposing to employ Australia’s Face Verification Service to achieve this goal. In this sense, the service would contrast a person’s photo against…

Comcast isn’t happy it won’t be able to see your web history when traffic is encrypted

Everyone’s favorite company Comcast is rallying against a plan by Google to encrypt web traffic, meaning that Comcast would no longer be able to see all of their customers’ web history. Comcast is lobbying US lawmakers, encouraging them to prevent Google from encrypting web traffic. Google is eyeing to implement the plan as soon as possible. The search giant will enforce the encryption of DNS data made by Chrome users as they visit websites using the browser. Technologists and activists say that data encryption will make it harder for ISPs to use data for ad targeting and will help to…

US Military Develops Algorithm to Predict Illness 48 Hours Before Symptoms – Report

The algorithm is in the early stages of development and although showing some success is still far from being deployed in the field, the developers say. The US military has developed an algorithm that can predict illness in soldiers some 48 hours before noticeable symptoms begin to show, Nextgov.com reported. Although the system is in its early developmental stages and is not ready for use, it has proven its capability to predict disease with more than 85 percent accuracy, the developers claim. The algorithm, called Rapid Analysis of Threat Exposure (RATE), is being developed by an IT company named Royal…

Facebook Discloses RECORD LOBBYING: Free Speech Is Dead On Social Media

Social media giant Facebook has disclosed that they have spent a record amount of money lobbying the government. Much like Big Pharma, because of the money involved, the government will do nothing to protect you and everything to make sure their narrative is pushed throughout Facebook’s social media platform. Big Tech spent big money lobbying making sure free speech online is officially dead. Facebook Inc. disclosed late Monday that it spent $4.8 million to influence United States lawmakers and regulators in the third quarter, lifting its year-to-date spending on Washington lobbying to $12.3 million — a level that already nearly…

Vaccines now being used to harvest biometric identities of everyone; Big Brother merges with Big Pharma

It’s all happening, just as we predicted. Big Pharma is officially partnering with the tech industry to pair “immunization” with digital biometrics, meaning humans will soon be microchipped, tracked, and ultimately controlled through a global identification matrix. The ID2020 Alliance, as it’s being called, is a digital identity program that aims to “leverage immunization” as a means of inserting tiny microchips into people’s bodies. In collaboration with the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations, also known as GAVI, the government of Bangladesh and various other “partners in government, academia, and humanitarian relief,” the ID2020 Alliance hopes to usher in this…

Global ‘terrorist’ list dominated by Muslims offers banks 3 MILLION names to deny service to without trial – report

A massive, ever-growing database used by the world’s largest banks to track terrorism financing and other crimes has compiled millions of names from unverified sources – including scandal sheets and search engine results. The World-Check database adds 25,000 names every month to its massive risk database, used by 49 of the world’s 50 largest banks to monitor possible financial, regulatory and reputational liabilities. Over three million people are currently on the list – many not convicted of any crime, some not even aware they are suspected of one.  Getting on the list is easy – employees scour publicly available sources,…

Corporations Use “Money USA 20/20” Event To Expand Facial Recognition Worldwide

Forget the Bilderburg Group meetings and how the world’s power elite meet in secret to help shape governments. Because Riseup’s, Money 20/20 events puts them to shame. This week, October 27-30, Riseup’s second annual and highly influential “Money 2020 USA” event will be held in Las Vegas, Nevada. Money 20/20 USA 2019’s agenda focuses mainly on creating a global digital banking system and will also focus on AI’s, biometrics and digital ID’s. But one panel discussion in particular caught my eye. Thediscussion titled “Building Fusion Centers And Combatting Evolving Threats” by Anil Markose, Senior VP for Booz Allan Hamilton, is designed to promote Homeland Security’s Fusion Centers and the…

NBC News Thinks Getting Microchipped Sounds Super-Convenient

We’ve written numerous times before about the upcoming push for personal microchips on this website. Thousands of people in Sweden are voluntarily getting “chipped.” Daisy Luther wrote that many Americans wouldn’t be far behind.” And experts have claimed that one day in the not-too-distant future that “everyone” will be microchipped. And it looks like the push is on. A while back, Brandon Turbeville wrote about the UK’s pro-microchipping coverage. And now, NBC News published a pro-microchipping video, gushing over the “convenience” of having your keys, your money, and your ID all placed in your hand in a device about the…

Colleges are secretly using social media data to rank applicants

Employers nowadays either ask for, or simply look for, a job applicant’s “social media profiles” – to vet them for whatever they feel needs to be vetted for. So in that context – why not “start often, start early” – in other words, why not subject college students to the same process even before they hit the job market? Someone’s surely thought of that. Or even, as the Washington Post suggests – go as deep as weeding out prospective students’ ability to even enroll in a university-based on some “rich data”. At least 44 US colleges “work with outside consulting…

The “Safe Drivers Act” Is A Real-Time National Driver Surveillance Program

A new Senate bill would create a real-time national driver surveillance program that would allow law enforcement to know anything and everything about a driver at the click of a button. A recent article in WCVB Channel 5 revealed that the “Safe Drivers Act” is designed for one purpose and that is to share everything a motorist has ever done with law enforcement nationwide. “Outside the Danvers branch of the Registry of Motor Vehicles on Tuesday, Congressman Seth Moulton publicly announced legislation he’s filed in hopes of making it easier for traffic safety officials to share information about drivers across…

News from The Constitution-Free Zone: Border Patrol Using Biometrics for “Citizenship Checks” in Maine

For a number of years now, I have been chronicling the ever-widening use of “The Constitution-Free Zone” by Border Patrol agents in the name of immigration enforcement. Papers Please: “Daily Citizenship Checks” on Buses Across Maine Highlight Constitution-Free Zone New York’s Constitution-Free Zone Leading to Warrantless Bus Searches and Detentions Greyhound Bus Under Fire As More Reports Of Immigration Searches and Detentions Surface Citizenship Checkpoints Start to Spread Across The Constitution-Free Zone The label of “Constitution Free” was given by the ACLU to describe the area that extends 100 miles from the border around the entire United States and holds…

To Stop Threat of ‘For-Profit Surveillance,’ Rights Groups Demand End to Partnerships That Give Cops Access to Amazon Ring Data

A coalition of rights groups Tuesday called on elected officials around the country at the state and federal level to end Amazon Ring’s surveillance partnerships with law enforcement due to the “serious threat” the collaborations pose to civil liberties. In an open letter, 36 civil rights groups warned that Ring’s doorbell surveillance technology “creates a seamless and easily automated experience for police to request and access footage without a warrant, and then store it indefinitely.” “In the absence of clear civil liberties and rights-protective policies to govern the technologies and the use of their data, once collected, stored footage can…

Identity theft’s newest target: your face

A lot of companies struggle with bias in the workplace, but for many big tech companies, the problem is a bit more extreme. Why, because it’s not just the human beings that are racist, a lot of their algorithms are biased too. This is the problem that Google reportedly was trying to solve when they got themselves into their latest privacy scandal, tricking black and brown “volunteers” to submit to 3D face scans. According to the New York Daily News, Google contractors told these biometric test subjects that they were just going to play a “selfie game”, and they’d even…

Forget Facial Recognition: DHS’s New Database, HART, Also Uses Scars, Tattoos, and Your VOICE to ID You. And Amazon Is Storing All the Data.

These days, you can’t really go anywhere without encountering cameras.  Going into a store? Chances are there are security cameras. Getting money at an ATM? More cameras. Driving through the streets of a city? More cameras still. Your neighbors may have those doorbells from Amazon that are surveilling the entire neighborhood. And many of these cameras are tied into facial recognition databases, or the footage can be quite easily compared there if “authorities” are looking for somebody. But as it turns out, it isn’t just facial recognition we have to worry about. DHS has a new recognition system called HART.…

Gene editing to protect US military: How the US could create a race of super soldiers

A US Department of Defense agency is currently looking at ways to alter one’s biology to provide adequate protection for personnel from chemical and biological attacks. There will come a time where sci-fi movies write themselves. These moving pictures wouldn’t even be referred to as science-fiction, as they would more or less be based on reality. Where it isn’t yet based on reality, it has to be said that we are getting to a stage now where it is probably only a matter of time until that concept has been actualized by government-funded scientists who seek to aid the US…

DHS Collecting Migrants’ DNA First Step in ‘Total Population Control’ of US Citizens

Surveillance and human rights concerns have been raised after senior officials with the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) revealed a proposed rule this week mandating that migrants of all ages detained after entering the US illegally have their DNA collected and stored for future records. Amid reports of US President Donald Trump calling for migrants to be shot in their legs and requesting a moat filled with snakes and alligators at the US-Mexico border, senior DHS officials requesting anonymity have provided new details on policies that may actually see the light of day. Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, the…

14 Billion Police License Plate Database, Knows Where You Are In Real-Time

Forget everything you have ever heard about police license plate readers and public safety, because it is all a lie. Three major Automatic License Plate Reader (ALPR) companies have created a mind-boggling database of 14 billion license plates that allows law enforcement to track anyone in real-time. The Digital Recognition Network (DRN) has a database of over 8 billion license plates and boasts about sending customers (law enforcement) live vehicle location alerts. “If you think there is nothing you can do to automatically detect vehicles, think again. DRN’s Live Alerts, part of the DRNsights for Insurance solution, uses vehicle location data…

Andrew Yang proposes policy that would classify all digital data as personal property

Andrew Yang is a Democratic presidential candidate for the 2020 elections. Yang is also an entrepreneur and founder of Venture for America, a nonprofit organization that helps young people to get the skills they need to work for startups in emerging cities of the US. On top of that, Andrew Yang’s meme game is not the only thing that is on point, as the policy proposals of his party are also a point in favor. In this sense, Yang just proposed the “Data as a property right” policy, which has the goal of protecting the online data of the US…

Singapore enforces new law – spreading fake news could carry a 10 year prison sentence

Singapore will become the latest government to make what it deems to be “fake news” illegal from tomorrow when its draconian “Protection From Online Falsehoods and Manipulation Act” becomes law. When the law was tabled in April, Jeff Paine of the Asia Internet Coalition warned that it was “the most far-reaching legislation of its kind to date.” Journalism professor Cherian George also raised concerns that the effects of this legislation on free speech could even be worse than the country’s controversial criminal defamation laws which puts independent journalists, activists, and critics at risk of being imprisoned by the government. However,…

House Arrest An Odd Twist Of Orwellian Oversight

Over the years technology has greatly expanded the ability of government to watch the movements and control individuals. During this time I have encountered several people that have run afoul of the law in some way or other the way the legal system deals with people is also changing. While many of us see house arrest as a great option to throwing minor offenders into a prison system filled with hardcore criminals it does have shades of totalitarianism. A recent article on this site explored the difficulty society is having in getting people to obey its rules and laws. Without…

Apple bans an app because Hong Kong protesters might use it to avoid the murderous, out of control police

Hkmap Live is a crowdsourced app that uses reports from a Telegram group to track the locations of protesters, police, and traffic, as well as the use of antipersonnel weapons like tear gas, mass arrests of people wearing t-shirts associated with the protest movement, and mass transit closures in proximity to demonstrations (it’s a bit like Sukey, the British anti-kettling app). The escalation of indiscriminate violence by Hong Kong’s police has driven mainstream opposition to the Chinese state and the Hong Kong authorities. The protests continue to grow, the the police continue to attack families, elderly people, bystanders, and the…

Google to face mass action over claims it accessed 4 MILLION iPhone users’ data

The Court of Appeal in London has given the go-ahead for mass action against Google over claims it illegally accessed the data of over 4 million iPhone users, overturning an earlier high court ruling against redress. In their legal action, claimants accused Google of accessing internet browsing data on Apple iPhones by bypassing Safari’s privacy settings between June 2011 and February 2012.  Mishcon de Reya, the legal firm acting for one of the representative claimants, described the appeals court move as “groundbreaking” as it “confirms a number of important legal principles under Data Protection law,” and could even mark the…

Betrayed: District Attorney’s Are Running “Advanced Public Surveillance Networks”

The public trust has been betrayed. District Attorney’s (DA) are using CCTV cameras and license plate readers to create public surveillance networks. According to U.S. Legal, the definition of a DA is “to investigate alleged crimes in cooperation with law enforcement.” Not a single one of the 22 definitions includes running a public surveillance network. What is happening in Pittsburgh’s Allegheny County is not an aberration, it is fast becoming commonplace. Last month, Lancaster Onlinerevealed that the DA’s office has created an “advanced public surveillance network.” “The district attorney for Pennsylvania’s second-most-populous county, Stephen Zappala Jr. has assembled a network of advanced surveillance cameras…

New federal rules will limit police searches of DNA ancestry databases

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) this week released new rules that limit when police can access family tree DNA databases to identify crime suspects. This new genealogy policy is the first ever at the federal level to address how online genetic databases sold as services to the public can be used in law enforcement. Here’s an excerpt from the DoJ advisory published on Tuesday, which focuses on the use of DNA to solve violent crimes: As genetic genealogy websites become more popular and individuals continue to voluntarily submit their DNA or enter their genetic profiles onto publically available genetic…

Amazon, LinkedIn, and WhatsApp join big tech anti-terror coalition for fighting “extremist” content online

Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter, and YouTube have announced today that their Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism (GIFCT), a consortium that’s dedicated to preventing “extremist” and “terrorist” content online, will be expanding. According to Facebook, as part of the expansion, GIFCT will become an independent organization with dedicated staff, dedicated technology, and an executive director. Amazon, LinkedIn, and WhatsApp will also be joining the forum. Going forward, GIFCT’s efforts will be focused on preventing, responding to, and learning from “extremist” and “terrorist” content on digital platforms. According to the announcement, GIFCT has already reached its 2019 goal of “collectively contributing more…

Hidden Cameras Use AI to Monitor Phone Use …

Australia has announced the roll-out of an artificial intelligence system which analyzes images of vehicles to detect illicit use of cell phones by drivers. The state of New South Wales (NSW) revealed a pilot program had checked 8.5 million vehicles between January and June of 2019, finding that over 100,000 drivers had allegedly violated mobile phone usage laws. “The mobile phone detection camera program will now be rolled out from late 2019 and will include fixed and relocatable trailer-mounted cameras,” the NSW Centre for Road Safety declared in a statement. “Together, these cameras will target illegal mobile phone use anywhere,…

Detroit Police Commission Board Approves Use Of Facial Recognition Technology Despite National Backlash

The Detroit Board of Police Commissioners voted to approve the Detroit Police Department’s use of controversial facial recognition technology on the public, Courthouse News reported. According to the directive, police would be limited to using the system when officers have “reasonable suspicion” of home invasions and violent crimes involving incidents like shootings, sexual assaults and carjacking. Further, the system doesn’t have assess to check immigration status on individuals and was restricted from accessing live surveillance streaming video or any security camera device. Outside agencies would be allowed access to the information if needed after proper paperwork is filed. The order…

Home Depot And Lowe’s Accused Of Scanning Millions Of Customers Faces

Home improvement stores like Home Depot and Lowe’s have become partners in Big Brother’s ever expanding public surveillance program. Home Depot’s “You Can Do It. We Can Help” slogan should really say, “We Can Do It. We Can Help Big Brother.” And Lowe’s “Do It Right For Less. Start At Lowe’s” slogan should say, “Doing It Right And Identifying Every Customer, Starts At Lowe’s.” According to the Cook County Record, two recent class action lawsuits accuse Home Depot and Lowe’s of secretly using facial recognition to identify customers as soon as they enter their stores. On Sept. 4, 2019, a group of plaintiffs simultaneously filed…

Smart Faucets And Toilets Use Alexa To Listen To Your Conversations

It is hard to imagine a more intrusive home surveillance device than a faucet or toilet that listens to everyone’s conversations, but that is just what Delta Faucet and Kohler have done. Delta Faucet’s “Voice IQ” takes advantage of where lots of people like to congregate and turns it into an Alexa eavesdropping center. “Designed with the understanding that 20 percent of all WiFi-enabled homes are equipped with a connected home device, VoiceIQ Technology pairs with existing devices to dispense the exact amount of water needed, all with a simple voice command.” Delta lets Alexa decide how much water everyone gets.…

Louisiana Court Case Reveals Extensive Driver Tracking System…Louisiana trooper looks up the history of motorist movements to catch fandom suspect in a lie about his travels that day.

Louisiana uses automated license plate readers (ALPR, also known as ALPR) to identify and track every motorist entering the state. The system’s use in an everyday traffic stop was revealed after a state trooper used the extensive tracking database to catch a driver in a lie about his recent movements. That validity of the stop was challenged, but US District Judge James D. Cain Jr last month upheld its legitimacy. On Tuesday, Judge Cain set a November 4 trial date to fully resolve the case of Eric J. Richard, the man who had been tracked. Richard had been driving his…

Maryland Governor Endorses Surveillance Plane To Fly Above Baltimore Amid Murder Crisis

A new report from The Baltimore Sun shows Gov. Larry Hogan on Tuesday pledged $21 million to assist Baltimore City in their efforts to stop the spread of the homicide crisis that has completely engulfed the town. Hogan has also endorsed the use of a controversial surveillance plane to fly thousands of feet above to record every movement of people and vehicles in the city. As early as 2015, we reported that Persistent Surveillance Systems was flying a Cessna 182T Skylane over the streets of Baltimore during the riots. It turned out the plane was a secret FBI aerial surveillance program.…

Massive 30 State, Real-Time ALPR Database Revealed

Our worst fears about automatic license plate readers (ALPR) are much worse than we could have imagined. Two months ago, I warned everyone that police in Arizona were using ALPR’s to “grid” entire neighborhoods. But this story brings public surveillance to a whole new level. Last month, Rekor Systems announced that they had launched the Rekor Public Safety Network (RPSN) which gives law enforcement real-time access to license plates.  “Any state or local law enforcement agency participating in the RPSN will be able to access real-time data from any part of the network at no cost. The Company is initially launching the network…

Show me your face: Google Nest Hub surveillance system lets you bring Big Brother home with you

Google’s Nest Hub surveillance system is constantly looking for its owner’s face and technically can’t be shut off, raising privacy concerns and questions about data misuse by the company that brags it toes the “creepy line.” The latest “smart-home” device from Mountain View comes equipped with a constantly-scanning facial-recognition-enabled camera that can’t be shut off, only ‘disabled’ with a switch that also (supposedly) deactivates the microphone. Just as the device is constantly listening for its “wake word,” it is prepared to leap into action at the sight of its owner’s visage. The Nest Hub, as its name suggests, serves as…

Hong Kong starts blocking VPNs as protests continue

Last week, Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam hinted that the country may start using executive orders to force internet service providers (ISPs) to block apps that are used by the protestors. Local ISPs said that the only way to implement these executive orders would be to introduce a large-scale surveillance firewall in the country which would operate in a similar way to the Great Firewall of China by restricting access to certain apps and monitoring internet activity in the country. Today we’re seeing the first signs that this surveillance firewall has started to roll out in Hong Kong with virtual…

Study: The Only Place On Earth More Surveilled Than London Is Communist China

A new study by research website Comparitech has found that London is the 6th most surveilled city on the planet, with the top five cities all being in Communist China. The study looked at 120 cities globally, and found that the top ten with most public CCTV cameras per 1,000 inhabitants were practically all in China. Central Chinese city Chongqing tops the list with 168 public cameras per 1000 inhabitants. The study found that by 2022, China is projected to have one public CCTV camera for every two people Another four Chinese cities, including Shanghai, make up the top five… and then it’s London…

Philosopher Warns Linking Human Brains to Computers Could Lead to “Totalitarian Mind Control”

Linking human consciousness to a computer cloud with the capability of reading everyone’s thoughts simultaneously could lead to “totalitarian mind control,” warns philosopher Slavoj Zizek. With fears growing that artificial intelligence will eventually dominate and maybe even exterminate humanity, Zizek, the senior researcher at the Institute for Sociology and Philosophy at the University of Ljubljana, is sounding the alarm. Zizek pointed out that MIT has already developed a “helmet” that can read your thoughts and reproduce them in writing or an artificial voice. While such technology appears harmless if it is voluntary, Zizek asks what would happen if it was…

It begins: Red flag law to blame for seizure of Connecticut college student’s guns because he posted a meme

As conservative talk radio host and legal expert Mark Levin often reminds his listeners, we are living in “a post-constitutional period” in which our founding document means less and less, thanks to the Left’s constant chipping away at the legal and civil rights protections bequeathed to us by our founders. One of the most egregious assaults on the Bill of Rights in recent years has been the adoption of so-called “red flag laws” by (mostly) Democrat-run states — laws that deprive American citizens of their property and due process rights under the Second and Fifth Amendment. Essentially, this is how…

Trump Administration Considering Social Credit Score System to Determine Who Can Buy a Gun…Would partner with Big Tech to use spy data from Amazon, Google and Apple.

The Trump administration is considering launching a social credit score-style system in coordination with Big Tech that would use spy data collected from Amazon, Google and Apple devices to determine whether or not an individual can own a gun. “The proposal is part of an initiative to create a Health Advanced Research Projects Agency (HARPA), which would be located inside the Health and Human Services Department,” reports the Daily Caller. “The new agency would have a separate budget and the president would be responsible for appointing its director.” HARPA would employ “breakthrough technologies with high specificity and sensitivity for early…

Distracted Driver Cameras To Spread Across North America

Imagine driving down a highway or a city street in North America and wondering if anywhere is safe from Big Brother’s prying eyes. That might soon become a reality if we allow politicians and officials to install distracted driving cameras along every highway and street. An article in iPhone in Canada revealed that an Australian company called Acusensus wants to do just that by expanding Big Brother’s prying eyes to identify distracted drivers in North America. “Acusensus, an Australian company that uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) to spot distracted drivers, made a pitch at the 2019 International Conference on Urban Traffic Safety in…

Ring Gave Police Stats About Users Who Said ‘No’ to Law Enforcement Requests

Amazon’s home security company Ring tracked how its users responded to law enforcement requests for surveillance footage captured by Ring devices, and it provided overviews of that data to police departments upon request. In emails obtained by Gizmodo, Ring informed a Florida police department about the number of times residents had refused police access to their cameras or ignored their requests altogether. “When Neighbors first launched in the Ring app, initial video request data was analyzed in addition to getting feedback from a few early partners,” a company spokesperson said. “This is not representative of our current policies or the…

The Plan to Use Fitbit Data to Stop Mass Shootings Is One of the Scariest Proposals Yet

In the aftermath of yet another mass shooting in America, loved ones grieve, gun control advocates call for common-sense reforms, and politicians suggest new “solutions” that won’t do anything about guns. These proposals frequently focus on mental health, but a new plan before the White House to monitor “neurobehavioral” predictors of violence isn’t just misguided, it’s terrifyingly dystopian. Last week, the Washington Post reported that the White House had been briefed on a plan to create an agency called HARPA, a healthcare counterpart to the Pentagon’s research and development arm DARPA. Among other initiatives, this new agency would reportedly collect…

TEACH THEM YOUNG: Kids being ordered by government officials to pay sales tax on their small businesses

Twelve-year-old Lucie Wise couldn’t wait to open her own business. On three separate occasions, she had accompanied her mother to the Children’s Entrepreneur Market—an expo of child-run businesses hosted annually by the Utah nonprofit Libertas Institute—dreaming of the day she could set up her own booth and sell her wares to curious passersby. Lucie’s experience as a spectator at prior markets had given her time to think long and hard about what kind of company she wanted to start. Getting a jumpstart on the summer, when she would make her debut at the Children’s Entrepreneur Market, she planted 500 flower…